The European Business Aviation Association (EBAA) continues to protest that there should be a de minimis level of activity before business aviation operators fall under the requirements of the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU-ETS), due to the disproportionate costs involved and despite their ability to use Eurocontrol’s ETS Support Facility (SF) for calculating fuel-use by so-called “small emitters.”
European Business Aviation Association
The Italian government has approved an amendment to the contentious tax on business aircraft that it made law on April 29. Now, foreign-registered aircraft operated privately will incur the tax only if they stay for 45 consecutive days, rather than the 48-hour threshold in effect until now. The amendment, which is expected to be endorsed by the Italian parliament, would also reduce the rate of the tax by 50 percent.
Jay Johnson, chairman and CEO of Gulfstream parent company General Dynamics, will retire at the end of the year. He will be succeeded by Phebe Novakovic, who was recently named the company’s president and COO.
At a European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU-ETS) session yesterday afternoon at the Canadian Business Aviation Association annual meeting, which started yesterday and concludes today in Toronto, EBAA CEO Fabio Gamba said he shares the audience’s frustration with the scheme’s many flaws. He readily acknowledged that the EU-ETS discriminates against business aviation and fails to encourage operators to reduce their carbon footprint.
Despite a “challenging” European economy, the 12th annual European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition, which concluded yesterday in Geneva, “was one of the strongest EBACE shows yet, demonstrating its value,” organizers NBAA and EBAA said.
The show attracted 12,638 attendees from 99 countries–both numbers on par with last year’s show. Some 491 exhibitors occupied a record-breaking 2,280 booth spaces at the Geneva Palexpo convention center. The show’s static display area, which was 10 percent larger than last year’s, presented a record-setting 60 aircraft.
Some statistics indicate as much as 35 percent of flights in Europe are illegal charter flights–although EBAA puts this number at about 12 percent–but “the truth is nobody knows,” Aoife O’Sullivan, partner at law firm Gates and Partners, said yesterday at EBACE during a panel discussion about the problem.
Eurocontrol director general David McMillan and International Business Aviation Council (IBAC) director general Don Spruston received 2012 European Business Aviation Awards from EBAA and NBAA on Monday at EBACE.
According to a news release from EBAA and NBAA, “as the third and final day of [EBACE 2012] concluded, 12,638 Attendees had participated, representing 99 countries – both numbers on par with last year’s show. Additionally, 491 Exhibitors were on hand, occupying a record-breaking 2,280 booth spaces across Halls 5, 6 and 7 of the Geneva Palexpo convention center.”
Show organizers from the U.S. National Business Aviation Association, which jointly promotes the EBACE show, came to Geneva flushed with success (but doubtless fatigued too) after the successful relaunch of the Asian Business Aviation Conference & Exhibition (ABACE). The March 27-29 event in Shanghai was, by common consent, a resounding success–especially considering the many challenges that organizers faced in running a modern trade show in China’s main business city.
While business aircraft operators tear their hair out trying to comply with the European Union’s controversial emissions trading scheme, the issue is threatening to escalate into a full-blown trade war. But an EBACE panel on ETS here in Geneva yesterday heard that the EU appears to have no intention in backing down, with the discussion underscoring the vast gulf between the aims of the carbon cap-and-trade policy and the realities of compliance.